More People Choosing Tri-Cities as a Retirement Destination - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

More People Choosing Tri-Cities as a Retirement Destination

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KENNEWICK, Wash.-- The Tri-Cities is becoming an increasingly popular retirement destination.

More retirees are moving here each year and it's not just the sunshine that's attracting them to the area.

Many people love our sunshine in the Tri-Cities and choose to soak up the sun in their retirement here.

But what's new to the Tri-Cities is giving seniors even more reasons to pick our area for their later years.

The warm weather here may be one of the top attractions to the Tri-Cities for retirees.

But the region's growth in medical care services, accessibility and younger family members re-locating to the Tri-Cties for work also play a big role in bringing more seniors here.

"Cost of the housing, the cost of services are much cheaper over here. So we're finding a lot of people from outside the area as far as California are coming here to retire," said Mayor Steve Young, City of Kennewick.

The low cost of living allows many to live off their savings here and retirees like the changes they're seeing.

"We have seen a great deal of change but they've all been positive changes in the terms of growth, in terms of friendliness, in terms of services and we are just very pleased to be here," said Rev. Bill Hamel, retiree.

"The accessibility to do things here is another wonderful aspect because if you're bored, it's your fault," said Joanne VanGorder, retiree.

"Moved from the east, people would speak to me on the street and I would straighten up and say you don't know me. That was my reaction, but I've learned to get over that very definitely. So it's an atmosphere," said June Johnson, retiree.

Retirees say the area offers everything they need and are happy to call the Tri-Cities their final home.

"I've seen everything I wanted to see and I'm perfectly content to just stay here," Johnson said.

"I don't ever want to hear the word move. I think that we have found the place that we will be staying and we really enjoy it," VanGorder said.

Mayor Young said the senior population in the Tri-Cities is growing at a rate of 8.5% a year and it's only going to increase as the baby boomers generation reaches their retirement years.